Category Archives: Military

Retry or retrial?

It is time to revisit a few issues, actually one issue and a whole lot connected to it. To start, I decided to go with The Verge, it has its ducks decently in a row, the article ‘NSO’s Pegasus spyware: here’s what we know’ is the best of them all, they also make reference to a lot of articles, and they have a decent line. The article (at https://www.theverge.com/22589942/nso-group-pegasus-project-amnesty-investigation-journalists-activists-targeted) is best if you read it yourself. Mitchell Clark did a good job, and as you have read the article, I can make a few jumps. The important jump gets us to the Washington Post (at https://www.washingtonpost.com/investigations/interactive/2021/nso-spyware-pegasus-cellphones/). This came from the link in “However, much of the reporting centers around a list containing 50,000 phone numbers” and when we seek the Washington Post article, we get “reporters were able to identify more than 1,000 people spanning more than 50 countries through research and interviews on four continents: several Arab royal family members, at least 65 business executives, 85 human rights activists, 189 journalists, and more than 600 politicians and government officials — including cabinet ministers, diplomats, and military and security officers. The numbers of several heads of state and prime ministers also appeared on the list”, no evidence mind you, merely statement and boasting. I call it boast, because we see there that the Amnesty’s Security Lab examined 67 smartphones all whilst close to 50% had an inconclusive test. If this is 67, what about the other 49,933? So when we get to “NSO chief executive Shalev Hulio expressed concern in a phone interview with The Post about some of the details he had read in Pegasus Project stories Sunday, while continuing to dispute that the list of more than 50,000 phone numbers had anything to do with NSO or Pegasus”, my support goes to Shalev Hulio. The Washington Post has a declining amount of credibility and this does not help. From my point of view, I would have made a dashboard based on the 50,000 numbers with a clear separation, In the top layer the continents, then the countries, where we see number of mobiles, versus number of landlines. This basic setting was never done, how stupid is that? A second dashboard could be the identifying class (journalist, government, lawyer, NGO) just to coin a phrase, the Washington Post was all about emotion, not about fact. I see this as a prime time hack job, with the alleged journo’s being the hacks, we also do not get any level of trustworthy setting on how the leak got to the Washington Post. Question upon question and in the mean time we get to see “In Hungary, numbers associated with at least two media magnates were among hundreds on the list, and the phones of two working journalists were targeted and infected, forensic analysis showed” 4 people and 50,000 numbers, could the article be any less relevant? And the stupidity of the Washington Post does not end, no it goes further with “Amnesty’s forensics found evidence that Pegasus was targeted at the two women closest to Saudi columnist Khashoggi, who wrote for The Post’s Opinions section. The phone of his fiancee, Hatice Cengiz, was successfully infected during the days after his murder in Turkey on Oct. 2, 2018, according to a forensic analysis by Amnesty’s Security Lab”, we see ‘two women closest to Saudi columnist Khashoggi’, so how did they get there? Because the numbers were on the list? And when we see ‘The phone of his fiancee, Hatice Cengiz, was successfully infected’, so how was that evidence obtained? From my point of view the text “according to a forensic analysis by Amnesty’s Security Lab” just does not cover it. It even gets worse with “Also on the list were the numbers of two Turkish officials involved in investigating his dismemberment by a Saudi hit team”, I see it as a weak approach to mention “investigating his dismemberment” which was NEVER proven, the proof requires a body, they never got that, at best the man is theoretically still merely missing. And from there we get to “Khashoggi also had a wife, Hanan Elatr, whose phone was targeted by someone using Pegasus in the months before his killing. Amnesty was unable to determine whether the hack was successful”, consider the text “Amnesty was unable to determine whether the hack was successful”, if that is true, how come we get “targeted by someone using Pegasus in the months before his killing”, how was that timeline proven? It is a simple question, the article is a bad approach to give more visibility to a journalist no one gives a fuck about. I like the quote ““This is nasty software — like eloquently nasty,” said Timothy Summers, a former cybersecurity engineer at a U.S. intelligence agency and now director of IT at Arizona State University”, is it eloquent because the NSA never made it, or because an Israeli company has the lead on this? I wonder what Timothy would have said if this was an NSA application? 

And the Verge is on my side, they give us “WAIT, WHO MADE THIS LIST?”, as well as “At this point, that’s clear as mud. NSO says the list has nothing to do with its business, and claims it’s from a simple database of cellular numbers that’s a feature of the global cellular network”, which is supported by “A statement from an Amnesty International spokesperson, posted to Twitter by cybersecurity journalist Kim Zetter, says that the list indicates numbers that were marked as “of interest” to NSO’s various clients. The Washington Post says that the list is from 2016” and when we consider these quotes and we read the Washington Post article for the shite it seems to be, I wonder who is waking up to the fact that the media, all the other media is merely re-quoting what the Washington Post stated and it is absent of all kinds of facts, or they merely didn’t bother putting the facts there. 

The entire Pegasus setting seems like a Wag the Dog approach to whatever these papers want to create and it is optionally a setting (a speculative one) that this is the push from stakeholders who have an issue with the NSO group, all whilst no credible evidence is given to us that there is an actual issue. And in all this the money trail was ignored, I ignored it too, mainly because I was unaware, yet the Verge was aware and they give us “At the time, the costs were reportedly $650,000 to hack 10 iPhone or Android users, or $500,000 to infiltrate five BlackBerry users. Clients could then pay more to target additional users, saving as they spy with bulk discounts: $800,000 for an additional 100 phones, $500,000 for an extra 50 phones” this implies that the cheapest option would be 500 times $800,000, which gives us $400,000,000 that is a whole lot of cash for a lot of people no one cares about. Yes, there are a few alleged targets that makes the pricing worth it, but with the setting I have, there is no way that the 50,000 numbers make sense, oh and before I forget, if this is a list for multiple sources, how many of the numbers doubled up? Too many questions and the media stupidly reprinting what the Washington Post is giving us makes no sense at all, unless you are a stakeholder with anti-Israel sentiments. 

In this Shalev Hulio is right that he is “continuing to dispute that the list of more than 50,000 phone numbers had anything to do with NSO or Pegasus”, I would too and I found a lot of the disputable issues within an hour, I wonder how shortsighted the media was when they decided to reprint what the Washington Post gave them. So whilst the Guardian gives us ‘the global impact of the Pegasus project’, I merely see a storm in a teacup, because the issues in the Washington Post were never decently vetted on a few levels and that is likely the biggest failing of the media at present. It is merely my point of view and I am happy to state that I could be wrong, but the lack of credible evidence, all whilst the media has a declining level of credibility makes my view the most likely correct one, most likely, because I have not seen the evidence, but as you read the articles, that are all about details, lacking generic evidence, how would you see it?

Leave a comment

Filed under IT, Military, Media, Politics, Science

Out of my depth

It happens, we all have ideas, or thoughts, but we are out of our depth. In my case, we will soon see just how out of my depth I can get. Yet I del that it matters. You see, I was watching an old episode of NCIS (season 6) and for some reason my mind started clicking things together. I don’t think it is even connected, but for some reason my mind wandered towards the old drone problem, as well as the attack drones flying into Saudi Arabia. It gave me an idea when I remembered an old physics class. And then my mind went towards an old toy named Meccano. 

Meccano

The combination made me consider an idea to down attack drones. There are are a few parts.

The first is that the drone needs to be shaped like the image, the drone needs to be more circular in body and it needs the space from wing to point to be extended by 40cm – 60cm. That is merely the first part. Now the Meccano part comes into play (optionally something more advanced), the idea is that two circles extent in flight. Within the circles we have copper parts (see image), at the edge we have 2-4 wires and one of the circles has 4 spokes that are shaped like propeller blades, so the drone in flight will power the blades and make one of the circles rotate. Now the elements between the two circles are copper parts, perhaps you remember the old physics device (the electrostatic generator), used to create lightning. This is exactly the same principle. Some of you (some with aero engineering degrees, a degree I do not have) will state that you can put the electrical elements within the drone, but in this situation you need no large battery, saving weight, more important you can fly close by the other drone and do not need a targeting system, all options that require weight and additional electronics. If the wire hits the other drone, the shock should end its systems and optionally its electronics as well. That was the thought that came to me, and for some reason, it feels important to push anti drone activity forward. 

Yes, I am out of my depth, but the idea was there for a reason, I have no idea why, merely that the creative part in me needed to stretch its boundaries and my keyboard helped out. I now merely miss my old Adobe suite. I love my Apple pages and keynote, but it misses out on a few design elements. So as my mind is going over what else could be done, I cannot see any, but then, I do not have a degree in aerodynamical engineering, I do have one in ships engineering, got it in 1979, never used it though, such is life.

Leave a comment

Filed under Military, Science

From horse to course

Yes, there is a horse, it is not Mr. Ed, there is no kind conversation. This one has wings, and there are a few versions, including the off-spring of Lord Poseidon. Whether we believe Hesiod or not, it does not matter. Pegasus became a part of our oldest mythological stories. Yet today, Pegasus is something else, a figment from the imaginations of the NSO group and it was made real. It has been out for some time and last week we got the media and their overemotional response that it had a connection to 50,000 people, with 0.36% of these people journalists.

So what gives?
It is important to look at a few sources. The first is the BBC (at https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-middle-east-57922543) who gives us ‘Princess Latifa and Princess Haya numbers ‘among leaks’’, perhaps yes, perhaps no, who cares? We do get “The discovery of the princesses’ phone numbers on the list – and those of some acquaintances – has raised questions about whether they could have been the possible target of a government client of the group.” And here the questions start and the BBC is not asking them. Just like it is steering clear of alleged man-slaughterer Martin Bashir. So when we see ‘could have been the possible target of a government client of the group’ could is here the operative word. You see, no one is doubting that list, no one has given us a clear rundown of the names, a dashboard if you like, with the option to drill per nation and per class of person. This could all be a ruse of anti-Israeli groups, optionally the ruse of a competitor. And when we see “NSO has denied any wrongdoing. It says the software is intended for use against criminals and terrorists, and is made available only to military, law enforcement and intelligence agencies with good human rights records”, so which government leaked the list and how did THAT government leak what is implied to be a complete list? Then we get to the option that the leak came from within the NSO Group, which might be the most ludicrous thought, but I tend to look at all angles, so it is an angle that is most unlikely, but the chance is not zero. The article is all about Princess Latifa, not much about the NSO Group, it is an emotional lamentation to steer clear of massive screw ups like Jimmy Savile, Lord McAlpine, Sir Cliff Richard, and Lady Diana Spencer. As some say, the credibility of the BBC has never been lower. 

The second article is also from the BBC (at https://www.bbc.com/news/technology-57922664) less than a day ago gives us ‘Pegasus spyware seller: Blame our customers, not us, for hacking’. Here we are given “Investigations have begun as the list, of 50,000 phone numbers, contained a small number of hacked phones”, silly me for thinking that when we see ‘Investigations have begun’, we also get ‘a small number of hacked phones’, as such there is a much larger stage, and the BBC gives us “Pegasus infects iPhones and Android devices, allowing operators to extract messages, photos and emails, record calls and secretly activate microphones and cameras”, so if there are only a small number of hacked phones, how does that part matter? And when we get “a consortium of news organisations, led by French media outlet Forbidden Stories, has published dozens of stories based around the list, including allegations French President Emmanuel Macron’s number was on it and may have been targeted.” We get the real deal, a consortium of news organisations, led by Forbidden Stories hide behind ‘allegations’ and ‘may have been targeted’. Is anyone catching on? The media want to create emotional waves, yet does not want to be held accountable for their actions. The stakeholders are key here. A ‘consortium’ implies shareholders and stakeholders. It implies also that their issue is not that the NSO Group might do something outside of governments, it might show that the media does a lot more to anger the audience it desperately needs. 

And then the media does one more jab towards a currently missing journalist no one cares about with “including those close to murdered Washington Post columnist Jamal Khashoggi”, this is the emotional stage handed to us. It is “67 agreed to give Forbidden Stories their phones for forensic analysis. And this research, by Amnesty International Security Labs, reportedly found evidence of potential targeting by Pegasus on 37 of those”, so out of 50,000 we see that 67 are investigated and potentially we see 37 are targets, but there is no evidence that the NSO Group did this, these 37 might have been targets of the NSA or even the DGSE. 

And at this point there is one interesting flaw. If it was me, the first think I did was set up a dashboard that allows us to see where these 50,000 names are part of, where they are and how they were hacked. They have had a week and the stretch of media that gives us emotion after emotion is a much larger stage of stakeholders that need a negative view to be pushed onto the NSO Group. I admit that my view is equally speculative, but is it a wrong view? 

Finally there is the Guardian (at https://www.theguardian.com/news/2021/jul/22/israel-examine-spyware-export-rules-should-be-tightened-nso-group-pegasus) where we see ‘Israel to examine whether spyware export rules should be tightened’. Here we are treated to “An Israeli commission reviewing allegations that NSO Group’s Pegasus spyware was misused by its customers to target journalists and human rights activists will examine whether rules on Israel’s export of cyber weapons such as Pegasus should be tightened”, I can accept that view, but that also means that governments are largely to blame for this mess, if the list is real that is. There is every chance that this was a ruse to make the NSO Group less large, less of a challenge to a competitor and this is exactly what stakeholders tend to do, and using the media as their bitch is not out of the question.

My view is reinforced by “NSO has said Macron was not a “target” of any of its customers, meaning the company denies he was selected for surveillance using its spyware, saying in multiple statements that it requires its government clients to use its powerful spying tools only for legitimate investigations into terrorism or crime”, so as Macron was never a target, the BBC articles are less than accurate and that leaves the media open to all kinds of attacks. Yes, I will admit that it is a he said she said setting (she being the media), but that also means and implies that the NSO Group is not out of the woods at present. And let’s be honest, who needs a tool like this to keep track of the Dalai Lama? The man is out there in nowhere land and when he is travelling we see 50-150 reporters surrounding him, all ways to keep track, no NSO Group required.

As we see the horse Pegasus go on a course towards the government destinations, I see less of an issue with the NSO Group and a hell of a lot more with the Stakeholders who do not have the ideas, the innovations, but they really like the money attached to it. Do you still think I am on the wrong horse track?

There is always the time will tell part, but consider that if the media has not released a dashboard of these 50,000 numbers, I believe that my case is rather clear, I would personally consider that list is nothing more than the fabrication of a stakeholder who needs the revenue that the NSO Group currently has.

Leave a comment

Filed under Media, Military, Science

Powers that were

Consider the stage we are in now and the stage we were in once. We were driven by stories, stories with a centre of truth, but what that truth was, we might never know. Even now as we try to set the new stage to the current state we know about, we are almost desperate to see ourselves better than we are. So what if we go back?

In the age of Ancient times there were the gods, the Greek gods for one. They once made weapons of immense power, Devine weapons. Not because they were simply better to anything we hd then, but because they had an element that is not available now, it never was. The tinkerer (smith) in that company was Hephaestus, he had enough for 5 weapons, 5 choices imbued with that one element making the weapon  hundred times more powerful than anything available at that time. One already existed, the hammer of Hephaestus. It is the weakest of them all, but it already existed. A hammer that can hit any object in exact precision in angle and power. It could also hit another person with the strength of a thousand sledgehammers, it allowed Hephaestus to do what needed to be done. The five weapons were tremendous and Christianity borrowed from these ideas, but they were never theirs and whatever they claimed was nowhere near as powerful. So when we hear speak people about weapons of power, do they know what they mean? The third most powerful weapon is supposed to be the trident of Poseidon, the most powerful one is the bolt of Zeus and the stories seem to collaborate that, but why? Because he is king of the gods? The second most powerful one is the one you might not expect, it is the bident of Hades. Yet why are these weapons so powerful? A man named Erich von Daniken looked into this for years and wrote a massive amount of books on the subject. He started in 1968, I became aware on his books somewhere in the 70’s, in total he sold well over 60 million books spanning over 30 languages. Even as some people (to some degree me too) thinks he goes over the deep end, there is something to be said on this and my book (still writing it) touches on that part. So when the Ancient Greek gods came here (after they made a mess in Persia, now Iran), they had technological advantages, for reasons not that much, but they did. 

They brought the secrets of Celestrium, and more important, they allegedly had access to terahertz radiation devices , a substance we are only now considering to have medical implications. In 2019 Joo-Hiuk Son, Seung Jae Oh, and  Hwayeong Cheon found that ”Terahertz radiation has significant potential in medical diagnosis and treatment because its frequency range corresponds to the characteristic energy of bio molecular motion. Advantageously, terahertz-specific low energy does not cause the ionisation of biomolecules” We can speculate on how healing that source is, but it would seem that. Person in those days could not be hurt by arrows, spears and swords. Yes, this is off the deep end, but we are finally looking at the stories and that is not the only part, the same application on observation and identity safety goes on a much longer road, and we have not even scratched the surface. 

It is George Alexander Gazis who wrote “Homer and the Poetics of Hades”, he gives us Hades as a place of darkness, where even the gods cannot see, and from this he concludes that “Hades remains impenetrable even to the omnipresent Muses”, a point never made in the poem. “In this sense,” he adds, “life and death are equated with seeing and been seen or not seeing and been invisible”; hence, the negative epithets characterising Hades. But this is a common conceptual metaphor, and death is also presented as a journey.” Hades has a landscape as well, and it is shut in by gates, features Gazis does not explore and why would he? Yet now we know that the application of TeraHertz technology would have setbacks, It was not bout the dark, it was about what non-TeraHertz technology would not be able to see at that point, not for 4000 years. 

Is this all speculation? Yes it is, but so are the writings of Homer and Aristotle, we merely accept them as they are old, I wonder what they never considered because no one would in those days, and until recently no one had reason to, yet the clues were always n front of everyone, and I am merely speculating, yet if someone looked at specific maps of what is now Iran, if they were able to look at rock pressures, someone might notice an almost perfect square with sides that were about 3500 metres each side. Did anyone make any connection to the this sizeable amount of pressure and the Ancient Greeks? So what is this about?

As I stated, it is all speculation, but I am taking another gander at the classical writings and the paths no one walked on, because we only now start to get access to the technology that alters the view we now have and that is also a setting we need to have for all new IP, games, movies and TV series. Most of the writings point towards Hades and how he is the weakest of the brothers. Now we see an optional path where he is the loner, the most secretive and optionally right behind Zeus in strength. Does that not alter the perception of a lot of writings? And when we see that some of these speculations do have an acceptable setting of alleged truth, what happens after that? In a factual life we need to get evidence, but the creative IP has a few additional paths at their convenience and they merely need to be original. 

The powers that were can imbue the powers that want to be, they only need to grasp what is readily available out there. 

Leave a comment

Filed under Finance, Military, Science

The devil rang

This is too good, I had just finished yesterday’s article and the Guardian gives me ‘Spyware can make your phone your enemy. Journalism is your defence’, in this that I have some troubles accepting that journalism is my defence, they are al about circulation and satisfying their shareholders and stakeholders (optionally advertisers too). But the article came at the right moment, even as this is about Pegasus and the NSO group. Whenever I look back at the title ‘Pegasus’ I think back to Pegasus mail and windows 3.1. It is a reflex, but a nice one. So, the article gives us “The Pegasus project poses urgent questions about the privatisation of the surveillance industry and the lack of safeguards for citizens”, which is nice, but Microsoft, Solarwinds and Cisco made a bigger mess and a much larger mess, so pointing at Pegasus at this point seems a little moot and pointless. (Microsoot’s Exchange anyone?)

Yes, there are questions and it is fair to ask them, so when we see “This surveillance has dramatic, and in some cases even life-threatening, consequences for the ordinary men and women whose numbers appear in the leakbecause of their work exposing the misdeeds of their rulers or defending the rights of their fellow citizens”, yes questions are good, but the fact that millions of records went to the open air via all kinds of methods (including advertiser Microsoft) is just a little too weird. And it is not up to me, it was The Hill who asked the people (5 days ago after the Kaseya hack gone public, the larger question that actually matters ‘Kaseya hack proves we need better cyber metrics’ and they are right, when we see “Once “infected”, your phone becomes your worst enemy. From within your pocket, it instantly betrays your secrets and delivers your private conversations, your personal photos, nearly everything about you” we read this and shrug, but at this point how did a third party operator (NSO group) get the data and the knowhow to make an app that allows for this? Larger question should be handed to both Google and Apple. The fact that the phones are mostly void of protection comes from these two makers. This is a setting of facilitation and a lack of cyber security. The NSO group decided to set a limited commercial application (more likely to facilitate towards the proud girls and boys of Mossad) and they took it one step further to offer it to other governments as well, is that wrong?

So when we see “All of these individuals were selected for possible surveillance by states using the same spyware tool, Pegasus, sold by the NSO Group. Our mission at Forbidden Stories is to pursue – collaboratively – the work of threatened, jailed or assassinated journalists”, if that were true, we would see a lot more articles regarding the 120 Journalists jailed in Turkey, not to mention the 60 journalists that were assassinated (read: targeted killing exercise) there as well. The papers are all about a journalist no one cares about (Jamal Khashoggi) but the other journalists do not really make the front page giving pause and skepticism to “the work of threatened, jailed or assassinated journalists”, my personal view is that the advertisers and stake holders don’t really care about those lives. Then I have issues with “This investigation began with an enormous leak of documents that Forbidden Stories and Amnesty International had access to”, was it really a leak, or did one government take view away from them (by Amnesty International) and handed it towards the NSO group? A list of 50,000 numbers is nothing to sneer at, as such, I doubt it was a leak, it was a tactical move to push the limelight away from them and push it somewhere else. As we consider Kaseya, Solarwinds, Microsoft and Cisco, the weak minded democratic intelligence players from the Unified Spies of America come to mind, but I admit that I have no evidence, it is pure speculation.

And then we see the larger danger “But the scale of this scandal could only be uncovered by journalists around the world working together. By sharing access to this data with the other media organisations in the Forbidden Stories consortium, we were able to develop additional sources, collect hundreds of documents and put together the harrowing evidence of a surveillance apparatus that has been wielded ferociously against swaths of civil society”, who did they share access to? Who reports to another faction that is not journalism or is purely greed driven? In this, the article (at https://www.theguardian.com/world/commentisfree/2021/jul/19/spyware-can-make-your-phone-your-enemy-journalism-is-your-defence) gives us one other gem, it is “not to mention more than 180 journalists from nearly two dozen countries”, as such we see 0.36% of the data is about journalists, so if I was to look at a slice and dice dashboard, how will these 50,000 people distribute? So when we see “If one reporter is threatened or killed, another can take over and ensure that the story is not silenced”, yes, how did that end up for those journo’s in Turkey? What about outliers in data like Dutch journalist Peter R. De Vries? He is not getting the limelight that much in the last three days, you all moved on? You pushed the limelight towards Jamal Khashoggi for well over a year, who achieved less than 0.01% compared to Peter R. De Vries. I reckon that this article, although extremely nice is there to cater to a specific need, a need that the article does not mention (and I can only speculate), but when we see all this holier than though mentions and we see an inaction on Turkey’s actions, as well as a lack of news regarding Peter R. De Vries, I wonder what this article was about, it wasn’t really about the NSO group and Pegasus, they are mentioned 4 and 7 times, the article was to push people towards thinking it is about one thing and it becomes about the 0.36% of journalists in a list of 50,000, all whilst the number is mentioned once in the article without a breakdown. Someone else is calling, when you answer, just make sure the local number is not 666.

Leave a comment

Filed under IT, Military, Science

What one reads

We all have that what one reads can be the opportunity for the other. I wrote about this in the past. On June 4th in ‘The left corner’ (at https://lawlordtobe.com/2021/06/04/the-left-corner/). Today, Reuters gives us ‘Facebook says Iranian hackers used site in spying on U.S. military personnel’ (at https://reut.rs/3rbz5Uf), and yes that is the direct result from Digital Direct Marketing. They all get to have a bite, so when I see “Facebook said on Thursday it had taken down about 200 accounts run by a group of hackers in Iran as part of a cyber-spying operation that targeted mostly U.S. military personnel and people working at defence and aerospace companies” I am not that surprised, I am just giggling that it took them that long. On the other hand there is a chance it took Facebook this long to wake up, either way is possible. Yet that also gives the opportunity for Cocoon to grow their marketshare, by a lot. Consider that one in the cocoon pays the $40 a year, no matter what the size, no matter what the trade. And in all this time no one in the Defence department (not even the DARPA boffins) made clear consideration to adapt Cocoon for military messaging. A stage that was out in the open when Google created Google+ in 2011. Yup the uniform people did seemingly not catch on. So when we see optional a whole range of security issues, is it that much of a stretch to set the IP of Cocoon to a much larger base (it will piss off Facebook, but who cares). A stage that is international is governmental and as we see it, there is an almost boundless level of custodians and customers and they all need privacy. So, as we see the setting of the digital sun on some, we can hide behind “Facebook said the hackers mostly targeted people in the United States, as well as some in the United Kingdom and Europe, in a campaign running since mid-2020”, whilst hiding behind the spoof “its head of cyber espionage Mike Dvilyanski said it was notifying the “fewer than 200 individuals” who were targeted”, yet this is Iran (and others), do you really think that they are merely hitting 200 people? Even at 1-3 per day it implies that in 2021 alone 197-594 would have been targeted, as well as their family members to find leverage. And all that time there was an alternative. 

And let’s be clear, this is not on Facebook, they did what their solution intended to do, Iran merely saw more and it is time to change that, Cocoon came at the right time and they have the inside track to a lot more. 

Leave a comment

Filed under IT, Military, Science

Dark side of the Jedi

Yes, I guess that George Lucas really had no idea that this would hold for well over 45 years, but that happens when you become the real innovator. In this we recognise innovators, but the path of one is often dangerous, perilous and it only works when the competition is at your heels. Consider that Star Wars came out when we had The Omen, Taxi Driver, All the presidents men, Rocky, Saturday Night Fever, the Duellists. All excellent movies, all driving the others to do better, that is why it works, so when I see “reversing the Trump-era award to Microsoft Corp and announcing a new contract expected to include its rival Amazon.com and possibly other cloud players” I merely wonder how stupid Trump actually was. To give $10,000,000,000 to Microsoft when they screw up their console position and hand the number two place to Nintendo with the weakest of all consoles, only to likely lose again in the future to the Amazon Luna and possibly even to Netflix? How delusional can you become? Microsoft tried to attack the Apple tablet market and failed miserably again and again, they blew their mobile market and they are trying to create waves for their Azure market, that is the player we want for the U.S. Defense Department? This all whilst we get a day ago “Microsoft has “paused” SQL Server in its Windows Containers project. Microsoft advises anyone interested in running SQL Server in a container to use the Linux root instead”, so basically the two non entries (Google and Amazon) were a better solution off the bat?

So, this Jedi (aka the Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure) is off to a rocky start. I had never expected to be any commander in chief so delusional that they would hand the contract to one player, all whilst better solutions (in the worst case merely equal) would be considered without proper vetting? I am not stating to merely give it to Amazon or Google, that is why vetting is an important process, yet in all that, Reuters (at https://www.reuters.com/article/us-microsoft-pentagon-jedi/pentagon-hits-reset-on-trumps-10-billion-cloud-deal-welcoming-new-players-idUSKCN2EC1YY) gives us “The company cited a 2019 book that reported Trump had directed the Defense Department to “screw Amazon” out of the JEDI contract”, is this how Americans see their national defence, as an ego driver? It would be one thing if Microsoft is the better party, but that hasn’t be the case for some time. 

So when I see “the plan would likely involve a direct award for “urgently needed” capabilities and then a “full and open” competition for multiple suppliers by early 2025”, which we get from John Sherman, acting chief information officer for the Defense Department. My issue here is that when I see ‘urgently needed’, I also remember the joke (not a funny one) that the Zumwalt class represents and the billions spend there, then there are a few more projects, all with pressing needs. And whilst we are getting towards it, the entire Kaseya and Solarwinds debacle shows the larger pressing matter. Security matters! And the matter of security can never be properly investigated if it is appointed to one player, one debatable player mind you. I am not stating that security at Google or Amazon is better, but the Exchange issues, which we get from ZDNet in April shows us “Four zero-day vulnerabilities in Microsoft Exchange Server are being actively exploited by state-sponsored threat groups and others to deploy backdoors and malware in widespread attacks”, this doesn’t mean that Google and/or Amazon is better. But the debate is on and Microsoft lost top dog and pole position years ago, they are merely in it to remain mediocre, all for the good of the board of directors. They lost to Apple (tablets), then they lost to Google (with Bing), then they lost to Amazon (web services and SaaS) and now surpassed by TikTok (video against China), that is an impressive fail rate. Consider that Bing has a market share of 2.71%, which against Google with 91.95% is slightly too funny for words. 

But this is not about Microsoft, it is about Jedi (all these funny acronyms). So when we consider the dark side of that forceless solution (by Microsoft) and we need to wonder about “the Defense Department also announced its plans for a new multi-cloud initiative known as the Joint Warfighter Cloud Capability, or JWCC. It must provide capabilities at all three classification levels — Unclassified, Secret and Top Secret — and parity of services across all classification levels; integrated cross-domain solutions; global availability including at the tactical edge; and enhanced cybersecurity controls, according to the Pentagon”, not the intent, but the investigative presumption of ‘enhanced cybersecurity controls’, both Solarwinds and Kaseya showed us that and this field is still widely in development, and sources like business wire are setting the Marke that cloud security will double over the next 4 years, a stage of increased visibility will both increase security and criminal activities, the winner remains unknown at present, even if we acknowledge that REvil has the upper hand, we have no way of knowing what happens tomorrow,  if security comes from innovators there is every chance that Amazon or Google will get there before Microsoft will, even Apple has a better chance of showing innovation than Microsoft in the cloud atmosphere at present. The fact of what happens next will be out soon enough, yet my mind wonders why anyone would be stupid enough to award national defence to anyone without proper vetting.  So when we accept that it was meant as “part of a broader digital modernisation of the Pentagon aimed at making it more technologically agile”, wouldn’t you want to vet to broaden the application of data, the security of the system and the application of security towards data, users and access? There is a reason that SELinux had roots going back to the NSA, this they all wanted to throw away? And the media is merely reporting the news, not questioning that time line? Why is that?

Only the agile and versatile remain superpowers, and the former president was willing to hand over 50% of THAT equation? So consider that what was JEDI (Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure) could have become the Darth (Defence Application Reprehensive Technology Hype) defence system. 

Leave a comment

Filed under IT, Military, Politics, Science

Conjecture

To understand this piece, we need to consider the meaning, when we use conjecture we imply and mean “an opinion or conclusion formed on the basis of incomplete information”, the media tens to be in this state well over 90% of the time. They call it something else, something like ‘from sources who revealed this under condition of anonymity’, or perhaps you have heard the statement ‘people close to the matter revealed to us’, yet it remains conjecture, the information was not complete, it almost never is. So when the Middle East Eye handed its readers the headline ‘Can Saudi Arabia develop a major domestic arms industry by 2030?’ Early this morning (18 hours ago), I had to think this through. I saw the setting last year, or the year before and I shrugged at it. You see ‘a major domestic arms industry’ is generic, too generic. Yet the setting is interesting as it will remove billions in revenue from the EU and the US. This after all the BS the US and the European nations gave them is actually refreshing. But the generic side remains. It is hand weapons, armoured vehicles, naval vessels, airforce crates (an old term for airplanes) the list goes on and they cannot have it all, but a nation like Saudi Arabia could set in motion armoured vehicles and hand weapons. I want to continue, yet lets take a look the article (at https://www.middleeasteye.net/news/saudi-arabia-develop-national-arms-industry-vision-2030) first. We get to see “Saudi Arabian Military Industries (SAMI) – a state-owned defence company – set up a joint venture with the US aerospace and defence giant Lockheed Martin, which, according to a SAMI statement, “will develop localised capabilities by transferring technology and knowledge, and by training a Saudi workforce in manufacturing products for, and providing services to, the Saudi armed forces”” is point number one. Then we get “Riyadh has successfully been able to divert some money formerly earmarked for imports to developing domestic alternatives and has reaped the benefit in terms of Saudis employed, but the goal of going from two percent domestic spending in 2018 to 50 percent domestic spending by 2030 is unrealistic if Riyadh wants to maintain its capabilities and maintain an arsenal of the best equipment,” she said” which they get from Emily Hawthorne, Stratfor’s Middle East and North Africa analyst. Yet I am not entirely convinced. I agree that 50% will be a tall order, I am not sure if 50% can be reached by 2030, too much needs to happen. Yet 2035? Is that out of reach? I am not convinced. You see, we all focus on one side, but this entire enterprise has two sides and we seemingly forget that. You see point one gives us ‘training a Saudi workforce in manufacturing products’,  my issue is that this is a focal point not a destination. You see, the military is a destination, The focal point of that workforce needs to grow beyond that. To see this we need to look back at WW1, yes that long back! You see no matter how amazing the Sopwith Camel was (I think the New Zealand Airforce still might have a few), it came from the Sopwith Pup. A plane that was introduced by Sopwith Aviation Company in 1916, during the war, yet the company was founded  on 15 December 1913 before WW1, implying that the design was altered for war, which makes perfect sense. That timeline shows that there is a larger stage to any plane, often used for war later on, that premise changed as the arms industry saw the massive benefits of wealth during WW2. It changed nearly everything. The arms industryu continued, but came from something else and it also came from a direct need. For the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (as my personal conjecture goes), it is in one part to strengthen national defence and it needs to diminish import in this area. A stage the others never had, they were always about the export. I tried to hide that clue in an earlier story named ‘The impact of insanity’ on January 20th 2019 (at https://lawlordtobe.com/2019/01/20/the-impact-of-insanity/), the clue was “The idea came from a famous Dutch bank robber named Aage M (70’s)”, it was a clue, because outside of the Netherlands this man and his book would be widely unknown. I used an engineering solution and made it into a stealth weapon (we all have a bit of Alfred Nobel in us). The secondary clue is seen now (which was unintended), but in the original story I did write “Yet, the brain needs nourishment, in my case it is music, I found out that different scores, will set my mind in different directions and it is not set in the style of music, Whilst one album gave me the brain jump to get me to find the Zumwalt pounder (initially merely a solution to take down the Iranian navy), it was David Bowie, and his album ‘the Next day’ that pushed me to make an initial design of the Elder Scrolls X (formerly known as ES6). I never figured out why it happened, merely that it does”, the underlying part I that other elements drive us to push other areas forward, the Military push is NEVER from the military, it comes from somewhere else, and in this case it is most often civilian needs. We look at the internet and decentralised computing (as DARPA brought it), but the stage is almost never in that direction. It is a business need that fuels a consumer drive and it then becomes a military option. That is more often the case. So look and consider Saudi Arabia, or as the fat cats say, a lovely large sandbox. This sandbox has it own approach, its own needs, elements and drives. We in the west think we know, but there is too much we do not and cannot know. 

So I give you an alternative, we tend to seek an understanding of what is available, yet what is the stage of observation? We look at planes, we look at drones, but what if we take this in another direction? What if we redesign a much older concept?

So consider the previous image and consider the Battle of Fleurus (1794) where they were used first. In those days they had to be big, but today, with what we have in electronics, we could suffice with something that could be found at Toys-R-Us. Did SAMI ever consider (perhaps they did) to use a whole range of stealth kites? We tend to look at it as something like 

Yet that was then, that was civilian, so who considered redesigning that kite in dark colours, make it more stealth like and give it its lightweight electronics that allow for a 25 mile observation with a 5G connection to its base station? No fuel, a silent observer in the night and one most ground forces will not see until it is too late. The Middle East is a different stage, its theatre of war is on grounds seldom seen in the west, as such different solutions will work. A thought that I have not seen explored by DARPA (speculatively) and Raytheon/Northrop Grumman (less speculatively). We all need to consider that the offered information comes from conjecture (even mine) as such I have n clear image of what actually is, but I can see where others did not look (which gave me my 5G IP) and now SAMI has another venue for investigations on what could be done to spend less in other nations (feel free to financially support this poor poor blogger) and consider what else no one has been looking at, because in one of the other stories I left another link, which involves two valves that apparently do not yet exist and that opens up other venues of export. It even gave me a third idea just now. It reflects on an old premise that started the origin of Ceramic glaze, it had different functions, now consider the two-part epoxy adhesive, consider that if it is in two parts, it is an adhesive, yet what if the container it holds has two liquids as well, separate innocent, but if you remove the separation you get a secondary reaction, a chemical reaction that does something else, we now have a nice little chemical detonator, no danger there, until it changes the compound it reacts too, we now have a different setting. All elements that have been abandoned for larger and more accurate electronics. Yet what happens when we change the need of electronics? They need batteries and they tend to have their own flaws, chemicals do not, we are all about relying on the latest ‘electronic’ solutions all whilst the people forgot to look at the other solutions. You see “It has some disadvantages too, e.g. higher cost per detonator and the need for intensive training for users”, when timing is not essential, chemical detonators have their own benefits and in mass production they are cheaper and the need for a larger trained workforce and assembly environment becomes less so, all elements that are not what the seller wants to give you, but the buyer can rejoice when it is faced that way. It does not apply all over the place, but the question becomes, what allows for a different curve that allows for a real application of reducing the investment a cost of developing an arms industry that is applicable to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia by 2030, there were two elements, the first is ‘develop a major domestic arms industry by 2030’, the second is ‘spending around 50 percent of its military budget on local sources’, yet that could be seen in two parts as well, spend 50% less of its budget and spend amount X on local sources. If $10B is spend in the US and you can reduce it by Spending $7B less and $2B on local sources the trip is near complete. Consider in that the cost of a US drone (like the MQ-1 Predators) all whilst a refurbishes Kite might cost no more than $15,000. So we get $40,000,000 versus $15,000. Yes the MQ-1 Predators can do a lot more, but how effective is that in Saudi Arabia? Most look at how cool you can fly for $40,000,000, all whilst 15 kites can cover a lot more ground and these groups merely have to observe and guide the MQ-1 Predators to its destination. It is conjecture that we know what is out there, all whilst the term conjecture implies we never knew. Be honest, how many of you considered the deployment of a stealth Kite? A device that uses no fuel, makes no sound and in the dark desert is seemingly as invisible as the night. 

All this whilst we need to consider that as SAMI becomes more successful, the US and the EU will miss out on billions each year, a station that they themselves had a hand in creating. In that time I came up with two additional novel ideas (that might not work). Have a great day!

Leave a comment

Filed under Finance, Military, Politics, Science

It started with pride

Yup, pride was mine. As I was considering what to do at the end of season 3, I had a brainwave. Of course I will not give it away here, as it might give me an added value to a player like Amazon (Prime), the setting I have not high hope on, but with all the sources want new and unique stories, my story could be a hit, so as I was looking at a map I remembered something and that helped me to set an additional side to the cliffhanger of season 3. It is a side and a direction I had not considered, and that what makes it fun. I had no plans as I was designing season one, now in the water I see the stage of season 3 entering season 4. A direction that until today was not considered. I wonder if other TV series makers have the same events that led to breakthroughs in thinking, plotting and planning. 

And it is the plotting and planning that was central, especially when you see ‘ANOM: Hundreds arrested in massive global crime sting using messaging app’, it comes with “conceived by Australia and the FBI, saw devices with the ANOM app secretly distributed among criminals, allowing police to monitor their chats about drug smuggling, money laundering and even murder plots” with the additional “This included eight tons of cocaine, 250 guns and more than $48m (£34m) in various worldwide currencies and cryptocurrencies”. There we see a new method of a trojan horse, a concept that comes from the age of Homer, a story that is well over 3,000 years old. But someone found a new adaptation of it. It feels like I am in synch with other people, or it merely seems to be the case. When you consider the headline ‘More than 800 suspected criminals have been arrested worldwide’, it seems that this was an operation that was months, if not well over a year in the planning and execution. And when I see “being tricked into using an FBI-run encrypted messaging app”, I get the idea that those on the dark side of the law, decided to trust the wrong person. And all this in the same day, no wonder I feel hyped and eager to continue my idea for Keno Diastima, a stage in play that I never considered a stage that goes beyond the oceans, beyond normal data. Yes, it is true that some see dots and wisdom, some see a unicorn and some see a dragon, but in the end they are merely plot points.

Yet the idea that some see a an image of a man, others see something different, it is about perception and that got me thinking of a different stage towards the new horizon, what happens next is up to my imagination. But I feel good about the options and I feel ready to take my imagination to new heights, like taking 5 left turns on a square and selling it to the readers as a circle. We all have our moments, yet today, it seems to be the case that 800 criminals are not having theirs. 

For them it all started with pride to trust the wrong application, and those offering that application. 

Leave a comment

Filed under IT, Military, Science

Any more staff in the range of stupid?

It is a question that is seemingly asked in political circles, but these questions never get the limelight it deserves. There are numerous examples, but the clear ones are starting 11 years ago. ABC at that point gave us ‘The $77 Billion Fighter Jets That Have Never Gone to War’ with small raised issues like “the U.S. led an international effort to secure a no-fly zone over Libya last month, the F-22, the jet the Air Force said “cannot be matched,” was not involved. The Air Force said the $143 million-a-pop planes simply weren’t necessary to take out Libyan dictator Moammar Gadhafi’s air defences”, the US armed forces spend (read ‘optionally wasted’) $80,000,000,000 on a plane and over a period of 3 major combat operations it never saw the light of day in active combat testing. Yes, as I see it the most advanced plane is one that never tests its ability in combat, it makes perfect sense, like the cold war did. Then we go to 2016, a bombing target that I have written about a few times, the USS Zumwalt. A ship so ugly that it is optionally too ugly to be used as target practice and sunk in a place where we can regrow coral reefs. The Guardian gave us ‘US navy’s most expensive destroyer breaks down in Panama Canal’ with the added “The Zumwalt cost more than $4.4bn and was commissioned in October in Maryland. It also suffered a leak in its propulsion system before it was commissioned. The leak required the ship to remain at Naval Station Norfolk in Virginia longer than expected for repairs”, with a few other sides of failure, even as the Guardian gives us “One of its signature features is a new gun system that fires rocket-powered shells up to 63 nautical miles”, a side that never ever worked. That is because and this is merely one of the sources ‘The USS Zumwalt Can’t Fire Its Guns Because the Ammo Is Too Expensive’, yes a side that was never charted properly, was it. It came down to the setting that “The two Advanced Gun System howitzers are fed by a magazine containing 600 rounds of ammunition, making it capable destroying hundreds of targets at a rate of up to ten per minute”, however, “now the U.S. Navy is admitting that the LRLAP round is too expensive to actually purchase, leaving the nearly $4 billion dollar destroyer’s guns high and dry”, now the class were adjusted for Raytheon solutions making the ship a joke on a few levels. So at this stage a group of people wasted $84,000,000,000 and it adds up that the tax payer has nothing to show for it. How is that for a sense of humour, but now, wait for it…..Now the BBC gives us ‘Major design flaws in Army’s new armoured vehicles, report shows’, a stage where we see “An internal leaked government report also raises serious doubts as to whether the £5.5bn Ajax Armoured Vehicle programme will be delivered on time and within budget. Problems include excessive vibration and noise”, yes that makes total sense. You see the two governments should be considered guilty of wasting $91,000,000,000 of the taxpayers funds, and that is the group that thinks my £50,000,000 post taxation fee on 5G technology is a waste of time and space? Hah! I found a way to sink the Iranian fleet in new novel and slightly overt ways (the sinking of the Kharg was not my doing and a complete coincidence). I also had a novel idea on melting down the Iranian nuclear reactors, but I hope to test that one in the near future, someone has to do something about that lot, don’t we? But this is not about me, this is about alleged stupid people, so when we get told that “the Ministry of Defence signed a contract for 589 of the Ajax armoured vehicles in 2014”, and we see the flaws, optionally massive ones with the added “successful delivery of the programme to time, cost and quality appears to be unachievable”, oh wait, didn’t the article start with “will be delivered on time and within budget”? Oh no, that too was wishful thinking, because if we see “An internal leaked government report also raises serious doubts”, it implies that some level of stupid thought that on time and within budget was achievable at some point, although there has been 7 years of budget (w)holing, or was that a political seven year itch?

And I need to restrain myself, because I came up with an idea that all the boffins at DARPA did not see coming and at present I am realising an additional stage that is a nervous one and letting my ego get the better of me is not a good thing as it opens up the theatre of war to a much larger stage. And even as I might not feel completely nervous, the fact that two governments failed the Army, the Navy AND the Airforce implies that there are a few issues all over the field and the media is not going after these political names who were buttering their sandwich on both sides of every slice, so there is a lot more to come in the near future.

So when you realise that “The MoD has already spent nearly £3.5bn on the flagship programme, which is meant to provide the British Army with a “family” of modern tracked armoured fighting vehicles. The Army describes it as a “core capability’ and key to its modernisation.” And that core capability does not work, float or fly. Did you honestly believe that the Chinese and Russian problems are real ones? If we cannot counter what they have to offer we are merely sitting by watching politicians draining funds and we see another iteration of ‘Tibetan exile leader warns of Chinese aggression: ‘China will transform you’’ by Fox News and others. Did you think that Chinese and Russian opponents have not figured out that large projects are now showing a fail rate of 80% or more, I will agree that a 100% fail rate is too exaggerating, yet consider that bucket of bolts (USS Zumwalt) that ended up with no shells to fire and now relies on conventional Raytheon technology on a ship that is $3,000,000,000 too expensive for its firing solution. Did you think that they had not noticed the issues, or the Issues with an untested Raptor even though it could have been taken through its paces three times over, you think the other players overlooked that?

As I see it There are a few sides of US and UK governments that require massive overhauls. And I am not trying to win them over for my £50,000,000 post taxation solution, for that I merely need Sundar Pichai, Jeff Bezos or Elon Musk to wake up and smell the coffee (and opportune stage for yours truly). When you consider the waste of $91,000,000,000 is am merely a wrinkle in the fabric of economy and a small one at that. So in all this as we are all trying to get by, fear not, there are players in this field wasting well over 100 times the funds that would keep you alive, so in this age and in the era of Covid, where almost 4 million are dead and 172 million got sick with 250K new cases a day added, we can relax knowing that funds for survival are wasted on all kinds of military problems and we need not worry about war, the wasted funds are for systems that seemingly will not ever work at present. So world peace is within our grasp, we merely had to spend it on systems that do not operate.

Can we hire any more in the range of stupid so that world peace becomes a reality? Although if Russia and China do not embrace that political arena we still have a problem but I might be the one negative thinker here. What do you think?

Leave a comment

Filed under Finance, Military, Politics, Science